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December 6, 2023
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RENTV and CA CRE Pros Reeling From the Passing of Jim Wiegandt at Banc of California


By Steve Bloom

While dealing with the complete upheaval in the world, many in the California commercial real estate community were dealt another severe blow last week with the loss of Jim Wiegandt, EVP and Head of Real Estate Banking for Banc of California. He was 50 years old at the time.

Jim, who was a great friend of mine, and a great client of RENTV, passed away suddenly and unexpectedly on March 12th. At a time when we are all pulling together to handle the disruption from the markets and the coronavirus, it is hard to imagine such a big loss for Banc of California, let alone the real estate community and anyone that knew him, as he was the embodiment of a team player. Those of you who spoke with or spent time with Jim know he had a get it done approach and a level of energy and commitment that was highly valued by his bank, his previous institutions, and all he worked with on the many deals he helped close.

But even more important was that his warmth, great sense of humor, commitment and passion for his family, friends, colleagues and business partners was evident in everything he did and shared...not to mention his love for MSU (Michigan State), golf and supporting his son Josh on the course. Jim leaves behind his wife Stacey and son Josh, who I know meant everything to him.

Since joining Banc of California in November of 2017, Jim played a pivotal role providing leadership throughout the Bank's various real estate banking verticals and he was instrumental in building out the direct to borrower banking model for multifamily and CRE banking. With borrowers, Jim had built a track record of execution and working tirelessly to deliver.

Jim's past two plus years with Banc of California were the last of an impressive and impactful 28 years in the industry. Prior to joining the Bank, Jim was the Director of Retail Income Property Lending for Luther Burbank Savings for two years and, prior to that, he was ,an Executive Director, Commercial Lending at JPMorgan Chase for over 10 years. Jim held a B.A. in Public Affairs from San Diego State University and had attended the Pacific Coast Banking School's Graduate School of Banking.

As mentioned, Jim was a great supporter of RENTV and a sponsor of our conferences, a number of which included Jim as a featured panelist. At our Sacramento conferences, the past two years, he was tremendous conducting one-on-one interviews with Ethan Conrad. His humor and straight-forward, no BS, way of putting things made him a great speaker.

In fact, the last time I saw Jim was on February 27th at our Silicon Valley Conference, where he was a panelist on the Multifamily Panel and I was the moderator. This photo of Jim was taken at that conference, just one month ago. For some reason, we were both taking pleasure in poking fun at each other (much to the enjoyment of the audience) while discussing the lending issues of the day in the Multifamily sector. The Covid-19 Virus was just becoming a major news story. It is stunning how, in many ways that discussion feels like it occurred in another time.

To honor Jim and knowing him the way I did, (he always said money never sleeps) Iím sure that he would want his team to get back to work. He would also want me to let you know that his team at the Banc, led by his very close friend John MacLean, is still there to keep the deal wheels rolling and their loans moving forward.

Thanks Jim and RIP.

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